Lighting Myths, Revisited!

Subject: Lighting Myths, Revisited!
> 2. You also have the effect of the side walls, which if clean wi
> nearly all the light in the tank back into the water due to an e
> called TOTAL INTERNAL REFLECTION.  A little light gets out at th
> not much.  This means that in theory almost all the light will s
> tank, irregardless of depth!  This only applies to the light onc
> hit the water, so it's ideal (as the original poster said) to po
> source so as much light as possible enters the water, i.e. close
> surface, or for MH, focused on the surface.

I'd like to add this to the myth list.  It may be true in an EMPTY 
tank.  It just ain't so in a planted tank.  Prove it to yourself. 
 Go into the room with your aquarium at night with all other 
lights off.  Take a book with you.  You _will_ be able to read the 
book.  Where is this light coming from if it's not escaping from 
the tank?

Karen Randall
Aquatic Gardeners Assoc.
Boston, MA